As the foreclosure wave crests in many parts of the country, many people who used to own homes are joining the ranks of renters. But whether you're new or experienced to renting, it pays to know some tips that can help you with the cost.
Whether it’s an apartment or a house, renting can make sense for many. What doesn’t make sense is paying more rent that you have to.
Want to pay less? Step one is to know the market. If there’s a less expensive place nearby, ask the landlord to meet or beat the price.
Step two: know what you want. A month free. Lower rent in exchange for signing a two-year lease. A two bedroom for a one-bedroom price. Lower rent in exchange for labor. Be creative.
Now the most important step of all: prove that you’re the World’s greatest tenant. What does that look like to a landlord?
“Someone who has a good credit score, someone who has stable employment, and also has longevity in terms of where they previously lived.”
-Earl Lawrence, Landlord
In short, prove to the landlord you should pay less because you’re worth more. Get references from old landlords. Tell them how handy you are. Show them your great credit score.
Bottom line? Applying for a lease is like applying for a job: be prepared, be impressive and ask for what you want. You’ll be surprised how easy it is to negotiate lower rent.